Acute diverticulitis of the colon represents a significant burden for national health systems, in terms of direct and indirect costs. Past guidelines claimed that recurrent episodes (two or more) of diverticulitis need surgery, but revised guidelines recommend an individualized approach to patients after an attack of acute diverticulitis. For these reasons, conservative treatment has become the preferred choice after an episode of diverticulitis. Thus, significant efforts are now being focused to identify the correct therapeutic approach to prevent diverticulitis relapses. Nonabsorbable antibiotics, 5-aminosalicylic acid and probiotics are currently being investigated in this way. The effectiveness and the future perspectives of these treatments are discussed herein.
5-aminosalicylic acid; acute diverticulitis; high-fiber diet; nonabsorbable antibiotics; probiotics; recurrence
Diverticulosis is a common disease in the western society with an incidence of 33–66%. 10–25% of these patients will develop diverticulitis. In order to prevent a high-risk acute operation it is advised to perform elective sigmoid resection after two episodes of diverticulitis in the elderly patient or after one episode in the younger (< 50 years) patient. Open sigmoid resection is still the gold standard, but laparoscopic colon resections seem to have certain advantages over open procedures. On the other hand, a double blind investigation has never been performed. The Sigma-trial is designed to evaluate the presumed advantages of laparoscopic over open sigmoid resections in patients with symptomatic diverticulitis.
Indication for elective resection is one episode of diverticulitis in patients < 50 years and two episodes in patient > 50 years or in case of progressive abdominal complaints due to strictures caused by a previous episode of diverticulits. The diagnosis is confirmed by CT-scan, barium enema and/or coloscopy.
It is required that the participating surgeons have performed at least 15 laparoscopic and open sigmoid resections. Open resection is performed by median laparotomy, laparoscopic resection is approached by 4 or 5 cannula. Sigmoid and colon which contain serosal changes or induration are removed and a tension free anastomosis is created. After completion of either surgical procedure an opaque dressing will be used, covering from 10 cm above the umbilicus to the pubic bone. Surgery details will be kept separate from the patient's notes.
Primary endpoints are the postoperative morbidity and mortality. We divided morbidity in minor (e.g. wound infection), major (e.g. anastomotic leakage) and late (e.g. incisional hernias) complications, data will be collected during hospital stay and after six weeks and six months postoperative. Secondary endpoints are the operative and the postoperative recovery data. Operative data include duration of the operation, blood loss and conversion to laparotomy. Post operative recovery consists of return to normal diet, pain, analgesics, general health (SF-36 questionnaire) and duration of hospital stay.
The Sigma-trial is a prospective, multi-center, double-blind, randomized study to define the role of laparoscopic sigmoid resection in patients with symptomatic diverticulitis.
Perforated diverticulitis is a condition associated with substantial morbidity. Recently published reports suggest that laparoscopic lavage has fewer complications and shorter hospital stay. So far no randomised study has published any results.
DILALA is a Scandinavian, randomised trial, comparing laparoscopic lavage (LL) to the traditional Hartmann's Procedure (HP). Primary endpoint is the number of re-operations within 12 months. Secondary endpoints consist of mortality, quality of life (QoL), re-admission, health economy assessment and permanent stoma. Patients are included when surgery is required. A laparoscopy is performed and if Hinchey grade III is diagnosed the patient is included and randomised 1:1, to either LL or HP. Patients undergoing LL receive > 3L of saline intraperitoneally, placement of pelvic drain and continued antibiotics. Follow-up is scheduled 6-12 weeks, 6 months and 12 months. A QoL-form is filled out on discharge, 6- and 12 months. Inclusion is set to 80 patients (40+40).
HP is associated with a high rate of complication. Not only does the primary operation entail complications, but also subsequent surgery is associated with a high morbidity. Thus the combined risk of treatment for the patient is high. The aim of the DILALA trial is to evaluate if laparoscopic lavage is a safe, minimally invasive method for patients with perforated diverticulitis Hinchey grade III, resulting in fewer re-operations, decreased morbidity, mortality, costs and increased quality of life.
British registry (ISRCTN) for clinical trials ISRCTN82208287http://www.controlled-trials.com/ISRCTN82208287
Sigmoid diverticulitis is a common benign condition which carries significant morbidity and socioeconomic burden. This article describes the management of sigmoid diverticulitis with a focus on indications for surgical intervention. The mainstay of management of uncomplicated diverticulitis is broad-spectrum antibiotic therapy. The old surgical dictum that two episodes of sigmoid diverticulitis warranted surgical intervention has been challenged by recently published data. Surgery for diverticulitis thus needs to be tailored to suit individual presentation; patients presenting with recurrent diverticulitis, severe symptoms or debilitating disease impacting patient’s quality of life mandate surgical intervention. Complicated diverticular disease typically prompts intervention to resect a diseased, strictured sigmoid colon, fistulizing disease, or a life-threatening colonic perforation. Laterally, minimally invasive surgery has been utilized in the management of this disease and recent data suggests that localized colonic perforation may be managed by laparoscopic peritoneal lavage, without resection. This review focuses discussion on available evidence for contemporary surgical and nonoperative management of diverticulitis.
sigmoid diverticulitis; colon; laparoscopic peritoneal lavage; surgical intervention
A 59-year-old man presented with abdominal and left flank pain. The symptom had started 30 days before as an acute nephrolithiasis, which had worsened despite conservative management. The abdomen was slightly distended and tender over the lower abdomen, without signs of generalized peritoneal irritation. A computed tomography (CT) scan showed an abscess in left para-renal space up to the subphrenic space and an unexpected pneumomediastinum. An emergency operation was performed, which showed retroperitoneal diverticulitis perforation of the sigmoid descending junction with abscess formation. A segmental resection of the diseased colon and end-colostomy was performed (Hartmann's procedure). However, the patient's condition progressively deteriorated, and he died of sepsis and multi-organ failure on the 5th postoperative day. Although pneumomediastinum caused by colonic diverticulitis perforation is extremely rare, it could be a life-threatening condition in patients without signs of peritonitis because of delayed diagnosis.
Pneumomediastinum; Diagnostic; Diverticulitis; Colonic; Perforation
Colocutaneous fistula caused by diverticulitis is relatively rare, and a delayed recrudescent case of colocutaneous fistula is very uncommon. We herein report a rare case of a Japanese 56-year-old male with delayed recrudescent sigmoidocutaneous fistula due to diverticulitis. A colocutaneous fistula was formed after a drainage operation against a perforation of the sigmoid colon diverticulum. After 5 years from treatment, he was admitted to our hospital because of lower abdominal pain. We diagnosed the recrudescent sigmoidocutaneous fistula by abdominal computed tomography and gastrografin enema, and managed the patient with total parenteral nutrition and antibiotics. As the fistula formation did not improve, a low anterior resection with fistulectomy was performed. The postoperative course was uneventful and the patient was discharged. It has been reported that, in fistulas of the skin caused by diverticular disease, complete closure of the fistula by conservative therapy may not be possible. This case also implies the possibility of a recurrence of the fistula even if the conservative treatment was effective. In cases of colocutaneous fistulas due to diverticulitis, radical surgery is considered necessary because of possibility of recurrence of the fistula.
Colocutaneous fistula; Diverticular disease; Diverticulitis
Diverticulum of the cecum is a rare, benign, generally asymptomatic lesion that manifests itself only following inflammatory or hemorrhagic complications. Most patients with inflammation of a solitary diverticulum of the cecum present with abdominal pain that is indistinguishable from acute appendicitis. The optimal management of this condition is still controversial, ranging from conservative antibiotic treatment to aggressive resection. We describe four cases that presented with symptoms suggestive of appendicitis, but were found at operation to have an inflamed solitary diverticulum.
Diverticulitis is a common problem, and although most cases will respond to conservative measures, surgeons will frequently need to treat patients requiring emergency surgery. Surgical management has progressed over the past 30 years, with a change in practice from routine drainage and proximal diversion (necessitating two further major procedures) to primary resection and anastomosis in selected cases. In 2004, surgeons must use clinical judgment to determine which approach will optimize outcomes both in terms of morbidity and mortality and in terms of quality of life for their patients.
Diverticulitis; surgical management; emergency
Sigmoid diverticulitis is a common disease which carries both a significant morbidity and a societal economic burden. This review article analyzes the current data regarding management of sigmoid diverticulitis in its variable clinical presentations. Wide-spectrum antibiotics are the standard of care for uncomplicated diverticulitis. Recently published data indicate that sigmoid diverticulitis does not mandate surgical management after the second episode of uncomplicated disease as previously recommended. Rather, a more individualized approach, taking into account frequency, severity of the attacks and their impact on quality of life, should guide the indication for surgery. On the other hand, complicated diverticular disease still requires surgical treatment in patients with acceptable comorbidity risk and remains a life-threatening condition in the case of free peritoneal perforation. Laparoscopic surgery is increasingly accepted as the surgical approach of choice for most presentations of the disease and has also been proposed in the treatment of generalized peritonitis. There is not sufficient evidence supporting any changes in the approach to management in younger patients. Conversely, the available evidence suggests that surgery should be indicated after one attack of uncomplicated disease in immunocompromised individuals. Uncommon clinical presentations of sigmoid diverticulitis and their possible association with inflammatory bowel disease are also discussed.
Sigmoid diverticulitis; Diverticulitis management; Diverticulitis surgery; Acute diverticulitis; Complicated diverticulitis; Perforated diverticulitis; Laparoscopic colectomy
The aim of this study was to examine the relationship of complications related to diverticulitis and visceral obesity. The study was based on a retrospective case note review conducted at the Hanyang University Hospital. Patients were diagnosed with diverticulitis based on clinical symptoms and abdominal computed tomography (CT) findings and divided into two groups: those admitted with complicated diverticulitis and those with a simple diverticulitis episode. We compared the body mass index (BMI) and degree of visceral obesity, measured by abdominal CT. The study included 140 patients, 87 (62.1%) were simple diverticulitis and 53 (37.9%) were complicated diverticulitis. In the complicated diverticulitis group, 9 (6.4%) cases were recurrent, 29 (20.7%) were perforation or abscess patients, and 28 (20%) were patients with systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS). Of the SIRS patients, 13 were involved in other complication groups. When comparing in the two groups, the complicated diverticulitis group had a significantly higher visceral fat area (128.57 cm2 vs 102.80 cm2, P = 0.032) and a higher ratio of visceral fat area/subcutaneous fat area (0.997 vs 0.799, P = 0.014). Visceral obesity is significantly associated with complications of diverticulitis.
Diverticulitis; Complications; Obesity; Visceral Obesity
Mechanical bowel preparation (MBP) has been shown to have no influence on the incidence of anastomotic leakage in overall colorectal surgery. The role of MBP in elective surgery in combination with an inflammatory component such as diverticulitis is yet unclear. This study evaluates the effects of MBP on anastomotic leakage and other septic complications in 190 patients who underwent elective surgery for colonic diverticulitis.
A subgroup analysis was performed in a prior multicenter (13 hospitals) randomized trial comparing clinical outcome of MBP versus no MBP in elective colorectal surgery. Primary endpoint was the occurrence of anastomotic leakage in patients operated on for diverticulitis, and secondary endpoints were septic complications and mortality.
Out of a total of 1,354 patients, 190 underwent elective colorectal surgery (resection with primary anastomosis) for (recurrent or stenotic) diverticulitis. One hundred and three patients underwent MBP prior to surgery and 87 did not. Anastomotic leakage occurred in 7.8 % of patients treated with MBP and in 5.7 % of patients not treated with MBP (p = 0.79). There were no significant differences between the groups in septic complications and mortality.
Mechanical bowel preparation has no influence on the incidence of anastomotic leakage, or other septic complications, and may be safely omitted in case of elective colorectal surgery for diverticulitis.
Colonic diverticulitis; Mechanical bowel preparation; Anastomotic leak; Surgical site infection
Autosomal dominant hyperimmunoglobulin E syndrome (HIES, Job syndrome) is a rare primary immunodeficiency characterized by elevated immunoglobulin E (IgE), eosinophilia, recurrent skin and pulmonary infections, dermatitis, and connective tissue and skeletal abnormalities. A 26-year-old male with known HIES presented with abdominal pain and diarrhea. Imaging showed sigmoid diverticulitis without abscess or perforation. Conservative management with antibiotics failed, and he developed a peridiverticular abscess, which was percutaneously drained with plans for elective resection. He returned four days later with progression of his diverticulitis, requiring partial colectomy with primary anastomosis. To our knowledge, this is the first case of diverticulitis in HIES. Diverticulitis is rare in younger individuals, raising the possibility that the connective tissue abnormalities of HIES patients may predispose them to colonic diverticula. Although the majority of complications are sinopulmonary and skin infections, diverticulitis should be considered in the differential of intra-abdominal processes in HIES.
Hyper IgE Syndrome; diverticulitis
Elective surgical resection in cases of diverticulitis should be offered to patients who have experienced two episodes. High-risk patients such as immunocompromised individuals or transplant patients may warrant resection after one episode. It is controversial whether young patients or patients with right-sided diverticulitis need to be treated differently. Chronic diverticulitis can be successfully treated surgically in selected cases. Adequate surgical resection margins should include the top of the true rectum and the proximal extent of thickened inflamed colon to minimize the risk of recurrence. Careful operative planning and the use of proximal diversion if unsuspected significant inflammatory changes are encountered will improve surgical outcomes.
Diverticular disease; elective surgery; right-sided diverticulitis; patient selection; temporary diversion
We report a case of a 32-year-old woman with episodic right lower quadrant abdominal pain. With the diagnosis of either acute appendicitis or tubo-ovarian abscess, she was treated with antibiotics, which successfully relieved the pain and the inflammatory findings. She repeated the clinical condition a few times and antibiotics worked each time. In a year, her subjective symptoms became milder, however, a giant pelvic cyst appeared. She had an exploratory laparotomy to confirm this diagnosis. Histopathological studies revealed herniated appendiceal mucosa through the muscular layer associated with chronic inflammation and marked fibrosis. Gynecological disorders such as endometriosis or lutein cyst rupture was denied. These findings represent appendiceal diverticulitis. We discuss the clinical features of the disease and its relation with the pelvic pseudocyst.
Appendiceal diverticulitis; Perforation; Pelvic pseudocyst
The most common indications for emergency operative intervention in the treatment of sigmoid diverticulitis are peritonitis and failure of medical therapy. Primary resection and diversion (Hartmann's procedure) followed by delayed colostomy closure is the current standard of emergency surgical care. Guidelines for best operative strategy, however, remain controversial and continue to evolve based on recent comparative reviews of surgical outcomes. Primary resection and anastomosis with or without proximal diversion and laparoscopic lavage are alternatives to Hartmann's procedure that may provide an improved outcome in properly selected patients. Ongoing changes in the historical paradigm of the surgical approach to this disease mandate the need for large multicentered prospective randomized trials to determine the best surgical strategy under emergent conditions for the treatment of diverticulitis. The current literature is reviewed with suggestions for a management algorithm.
Diverticular peritonitis; diverticulitis; peritonitis; Hartmann's procedure; primary resection; anastomosis; laparoscopic lavage
AIM: To identify patients with persistent acute diverticulitis who might benefit from an early colonoscopy during their first hospitalization.
METHODS: All patients hospitalized between July 2000 and December 2006 for acute diverticulitis who underwent colonoscopy were included in the study. Patients were followed during hospitalization and after discharge. Patients were considered to have a persistent course of acute diverticulitis if symptoms continued after 1 wk of conventional treatment with IV antibiotics, or if symptoms recurred within 2 mo after discharge. Patients were considered to benefit from an early colonoscopy if the colonoscopy was therapeutic or if it changed a patient's outcome.
RESULTS: Three hundred and six patients were hospitalized between July 2000 and December 2006 with the diagnosis of acute diverticulitis. Two hundred and twenty four of these were included in the study group. Twenty three patients (10.3%) fulfilled the criteria for a persistent course of acute diverticulitis. Of them, four patients (17.4%) clearly benefited from an early colonoscopy; these patients’ clinical course is described. None of the patients with a regular non-persistent course demonstrated any benefit from colonoscopy.
CONCLUSION: Early colonoscopy detected other significant pathology, which accounted for the clinical presentation in 17% of patients with persistent acute diverticulitis. Therefore, we believe an early colonoscopy should be considered in all patients with a persistent clinical course.
Persistent acute diverticulitis; Early colonoscopy; Clinical course
The peritonitis of perforated diverticular disease is a life-threatening condition. We report three cases where it occurred following unrelated extra-abdominal surgery and where surgical intervention proved to be the correct course of management. All cases were treated with a Hartmann's procedure; this is probably the safest option for purulent peritonitis in patients who are a high operative risk and have recently undergone major surgery.
The purpose of this study is to evaluate the value of nonoperative treatment for right-sided colonic diverticulitis.
One hundred fifty-eight patients with right-sided colonic diverticulitis were evaluated. Clinical history, physical and radiologic findings, and treatments were reviewed retrospectively. Also, additional episodes and treatment modalities were checked.
Our patients were classified according to treatment modality; 135 patients (85.4%) underwent conservative treatment, including antibiotics and bowel rest, and 23 patients (14.6%) underwent surgery. The mean follow-up length was 37.3 months, and 17 patients (17.5%) underwent recurrent right-sided colonic diverticulitis. Based on treatment modality, including surgery and antibiotics, no significant differences in the clinical features and the recurrence rates were noted between the two groups.
Conservative management with bowel rest and antibiotics could be considered as a safe and effective option for treating right-sided colonic diverticulitis. This treatment option for right-sided colonic diverticulitis, even if the disease is complicated, may be the treatment of choice.
Diverticulitis; Colonic diverticulitis; Drug therapy
Conservative treatment of uncomplicated or mild diverticulitis usually includes antibiotic therapy. It is, however, uncertain whether patients with acute diverticulitis indeed benefit from antibiotics. In most guidelines issued by professional organizations antibiotics are considered mandatory in the treatment of mild diverticulitis. This advice lacks evidence and is merely based on experts' opinion. Adverse effects of the use of antibiotics are well known, including allergic reactions, development of bacterial resistance to antibiotics and other side-effects.
A randomized multicenter pragmatic clinical trial comparing two treatment strategies for uncomplicated acute diverticulitis. I) A conservative strategy with antibiotics: hospital admission, supportive measures and at least 48 hours of intravenous antibiotics which subsequently are switched to oral, if tolerated (for a total duration of antibiotic treatment of 10 days). II) A liberal strategy without antibiotics: admission only if needed on clinical grounds, supportive measures only. Patients are eligible for inclusion if they have a diagnosis of acute uncomplicated diverticulitis as demonstrated by radiological imaging. Only patients with stages 1a and 1b according to Hinchey's classification or "mild" diverticulitis according to the Ambrosetti criteria are included. The primary endpoint is time-to-full recovery within a 6-month follow-up period. Full recovery is defined as being discharged from the hospital, with a return to pre-illness activities, and VAS score below 4 without the use of daily pain medication. Secondary endpoints are proportion of patients who develop complicated diverticulitis requiring surgery or non-surgical intervention, morbidity, costs, health-related quality of life, readmission rate and acute diverticulitis recurrence rate. In a non-inferiority design 264 patients are needed in each study arm to detect a difference in time-to-full recovery of 5 days or more with a power of 85% and a confidence level of 95%. With an estimated one percent of patients lost to follow up, a total of 533 patients will be included.
A clinically relevant difference of more than 5 days in time-to-full recovery between the two treatment strategies is not expected. The liberal strategy without antibiotics and without the strict requirement for hospital admission is anticipated to be more a more cost-effective approach.
Trial registration number: NCT01111253
Purpose. In the study presented, preoperative examinations and surgical methods were discussed along with literature, regarding two cases who were operated with the prediagnosis of acute appendicitis and for whom caecum diverticulitis was determined. Case 1. 21 years old male patient who had applied to hospital with complaint of abdominal pain, underwent an operation with a prediagnosis of acute appendicitis. Right hemicolectomy was performed with mass perioperatively determined in caecum. Histopathological examination revealed necrosis and inflammation in diverticulum wall. Case 2. 36 years old female patient applied to emergency department with abdominal pain and underwent an operation with a prediagnosis of acute appendicitis. Appendectomy and diverticulectomy were performed for whom inflame diverticula in caecum was determined perioperatively. Histopathological examination was revealed acute inflammation in diverticulum wall. Conclusion. Although solitary caecum diverticulitis is a rarely encountered disease, it must be considered in the differential diagnosis of right lower abdomen pain.
Colonic diverticulosis can either be asymptomatic or present with complications resulting in significant morbidity and mortality. A key presentation of complicated disease is abscess formation (Hinchey type II). The natural course of this is unclear and therefore treatments range from conservative approach with antibiotics and percutaneous guided drainage (PCD) to surgery. There is no clear consensus on the exact management strategy. A Medline based literature search specifically looking at studies dealing with Hinchey type II diverticulitis and its management was carried out. For comparison, five-year retrospective data of diverticular abscesses from our institution was collected and the outcome analysed. Various studies have looked into this aspect of the disease, elaborating on the significance of the size and location of the abscesses, the role of PCD, recurrence rates and the controversies regarding the need for elective surgery. Conservative treatment with antibiotics alone is effective in a majority of cases with a role for PCD in large safely accessible abscesses. Variable recurrence rates have been reported in literature and elective surgery should be planned for selected groups of patients.
Diverticulosis; Diverticular abscess; Hinchey classification; Percutaneous drainage; Recurrent diverticulitis
Supralevator abscesses are the rarest manifestation of anorectal suppurative disease. We report a supralevator abscess in a 60-year-old male whose earliest presentation included poorly localized abdominal and pelvic pain, tenesmus, urinary retention and weight loss, initially treated as diverticular disease based upon imaging and presentation. Progressive symptoms led to the discovery of a pelvic abscess with subsequent percutaneous drainage, later followed by emergent laparotomy, where a single perforated diverticulum was revealed to be the source fistulization. He underwent a Hartmann procedure with concomitant drainage of supralevator and ischiorectal collections. Perirectal pain with neurological involvement is part of a constellation of signs and symptoms that should invoke a high index of clinical suspicion for supralevator abscess formation. Percutaneous attempts at drainage are often inadequate; definitive surgical therapy is the best approach to prevent recurrence and associated morbidity.
The timing and appropriateness of surgical treatment of sigmoid diverticular disease remain a topic of controversy. We have reviewed the current literature on this topic, focusing on issues related to the indications and types of surgery. Current evidence would suggest that elective surgery for diverticulitis can be avoided in patients with uncomplicated disease, regardless of the number of recurrent episodes. Furthermore, the need for elective surgey should not be influenced by the age of the patient. Operation should be undertaken in patients with severe attacks, as determined by their clinical and radiological evaluation.
Sigmoid diverticulitis; Surgical management; Diagnosis; Elective surgery
Colovesical fistula is a common complication of diverticulitis. Pneumaturia, fecaluria, urinary tract infections, abdominal pain, and dysuria are commonly reported. The authors report a case of colovesical fistula due to asymptomatic diverticulitis, and they emphasize the importance of deeply investigate recurrent urinary tract infection without any bowel symptoms. They also briefly review the literature.
Perforated sigmoid diverticulitis, a complication of colonic diverticulosis commonly associated with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), can be life-threatening in allogeneic kidney transplant recipients in the postoperative period. Immunosuppressive medications not only place the patient at risk for intestinal perforation, but also mask classic clinical symptoms and signs of acute abdomen, and subsequently lead to delayed diagnosis and treatment. We report a case of an ADPKD patient post kidney transplantation presenting with nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain without signs of peritonitis. Chest x-ray revealed free air under the diaphragm consistent with intestinal perforation. Post kidney transplant recipients with ADPKD presenting with abdominal pain should prompt a search for possible perforated colonic diverticulitis in order to diagnose and treat this life-threatening condition early.
autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD); diverticulitis; diverticulosis; kidney transplant